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Welcome to 2021 and I hope it is a better year than 2020 although it has had a shaky start.

Quite remarkably despite the uncertainty of Covid and Brexit the local housing market has held up well since we returned from the first lockdown in June 2020 with local house prices remaining steady (if not increasing) and plenty of buyer demand during the Summer and Autumn of 2020 partly fuelled by the Stamp Duty relaxation and in part to the government leaving Estate Agents open during the second and present lockdowns and sales have been brisk with many buyers trying to complete their purchases before the 31st of March 2021 in order to save an average of £15,000 on Stamp Duty.

Moving forward it is impossible to predict what will happen during 2021 as there are several factors already in play which could have a direct impact on the housing market.  We find ourselves in the third national lockdown which could apparently go on until March.  Also there is much conjecture at present as to whether the Stamp Duty incentive cut-off date of the 31st of March 2021 will be extended and this could impact on buyer demand and resulting sales.  During the first lockdown I remember listening to BBC News and the prediction that there would be a slump in property prices at the end of the first lockdown and how wrong was this prediction in practice and therefore it could be that at the end of the third lockdown in say March this year the market could bounce back again as it did in June last year and we could potentially have a good second half to 2021.   

However, I feel this year more than any will necessitate a seller being competitive in their asking price and expected sale price and if you are selling, although I understand you want to obtain the highest price for your property, please listen to the advice of the agents you are consulting as I would hate for you to be over-ambitious in what you are trying to sell for only to find you miss the boat completely in selling your property if the market should change in the negative.

My heart goes out to those who run businesses in tourism, hospitality, entertainment, and retail, etc., who have been suffering over the last year and closed during all three lockdowns and I am grateful the government have allowed Estate Agents to remain open to trade which allows us to continue carrying out house viewings (subject to PPE and social distancing rules) and therefore some sales and lettings will be done.

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to thank all my vendors and purchasers who have bought or sold properties through me over the years because your contribution allows us to continue providing (and improving) the quality of our service that you expect and are entitled to.

Best wishes to you all, please Stay Safe and let us hope for a prompt end to the Covid pandemic.


John Hooper

For Hoopers

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